21 OCT - 3 DEC 2017

An exploration into ways contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists are responding to the resurgence in traditional art practices.




For the full exhibition essay and catalogue click here.

A new exhibition opening at The Lock-Up explores the ways contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists are responding to the resurgence in traditional practices and their place within the contemporary cultural context. 

Transmission is about passing on, sharing down the line and renewing culture wherever people find themselves living today. The exhibition Transmission includes the work of artists from around Australia whose artmaking is informed by traditional culture, knowledge and understandings as well as by personal, social and historic experiences. 

From works that utilise the immediately recognisable physical manifestation of culture such as traditional materials and techniques, performance and language, to those influenced by personal understandings, knowledge, beliefs and connections to family and country; the exhibition is a celebration of the strength, diversity and potency of living culture.   

From kelp sculptural vessels, possum skin works, traditional burning on Akubra hats, printmaking, graphic design, installation, performance and video works, the artists in Transmission utilise the full range of creative tools and mediums available to them to produce works that speak to the past, present and future. 

Curated by Cherie Johnson, Transmission features works by Billy and Lulu Cooley, Jason Coulthard, Ruby Djikarra Alderton, Cherie Johnson, Nicole Monks, David Leha, Steaphan Paton and Vicki West. 

In conjunction with the exhibition a number of public programs, events and performances will expand on the ideas raised in the exhibition and create opportunities for the public to engage, be inspired and deepen their cultural understanding and awareness.


Cherie Johnson is a Gamilaroi and Weilwun woman who resides in Newcastle, NSW and participates as an active member of the Awabakal Community. Cherie is an artist, emerging curator, education consultant and PhD candidate.  

A highly regarded lecturer in Aboriginal cultural education, Cherie has established the education and training consultancy Speaking in Colour and is currently a casual lecturer at the University of Newcastle. Cherie was awarded a Diploma in Teaching from the University of Newcastle in 2006 and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Sydney in 2001. She is currently studying her PHD in Aboriginal Philosophy through the Wollotuka Institute at the University of Newcastle. 

IMAGE: Cherie Johnson Wrapture 2014, photograph, 42 x 29.7 cm